JUST 20 days after passing his driving test, a teenager on his way home from school pulled out into the path of a speeding lorry, an inquest heard on Thursday. Kimbolton School student Michael Nutkins died at the scene of the collision last September 20,
JUST 20 days after passing his driving test, a teenager on his way home from school pulled out into the path of a speeding lorry, an inquest heard on Thursday.
Kimbolton School student Michael Nutkins died at the scene of the collision last September 20, after he drove out of a Godmanchester junction in third gear to turn onto the A1198.
The driver of a Daf Tipper lorry attempted to take evasive action but struck the offside of the 17-year-old's Vauxhall Corsa, pushing it sideways across the southbound lane before coming to rest on the grass verge.
Coroner David Morris heard that Mr Barrington had just dropped off a friend in Godmanchester and was heading home to Cross Farm Close in Hilton when the tragedy occurred around 4.50pm.
Witness Stuart Webb, who was driving northbound towards Huntingdon behind the tipper lorry, told the inquest that he had seen one vehicle pull out clearly from the London Road junction, and then saw the Corsa stop there.
"The lorry was virtually at the junction when the Vauxhall Corsa pulled straight out into its path," Mr Webb said in his statement. "He had no chance to avoid it."
Another motorist stopped at the scene after witnessing the impact. Julie Harris from Melbourn said the radio in the Corsa was on "full blast" and when she went to check Mr Barrington's pulse, she found one, although he was unconscious.
Wisbech lorry driver Graham Salmon, 48, told the coroner he understood that he was to be prosecuted for speeding. Regarding the collision itself, he said: "It was very difficult to take evasive action but I tried to pull over to the right-hand side of the road to avoid him."
Collision investigator Pc Francis Crawford said the speed limit on the A1198 for lorries is 40mph, but that Salmon had been "consistently travelling" in excess of that speed on the road. As the lorry descended a hill approaching the crash scene, it had risen to 51mph, he said.
The impact occurred at 35mph but Pc Crawford added: "Had the lorry been travelling at the speed limit and seen the hazard at the same point, it is likely the collision would still have occurred, albeit at 23mph."
Pc Crawford said the primary cause of the accident was the Vauxhall Corsa emerging "very slowly" from the junction into the path of the lorry. The car was found to be in third gear which may have meant Mr Nutkins, who only passed his driving test 20 days earlier, selected the incorrect gear as he commenced the manoeuvre, he said.
Coroner David Morris recorded a verdict of accidental death.